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Press Council starts discussion to register online news sites soon

KATHMANDU: Few days after three journalists affiliated with online media were arrested under Electronic Transaction Act for posting news in the news portal under Press Council Nepal has started discussion about making online journalism responsible and giving it the recognition of online media.

Nepal Press Council organized a program in the Capital on Monday and informed that it is preparing to issue a public notice calling on all online news websites to register themselves with the monitoring body.

It has now become necessary to bring online new sites under the council’s ambit as three online journalists were recently arrested in the Capital solely for what they published on their websites, said members of the council.

Metropolitan Police Range Hanumandhoka last week arrested three online journalists accusing them of defaming Dillibazaar Kanya Multiple Campus by ‘writing indecent content’.

“The three journalists were arrested and charged using the Electronic Transactions Act. Authorities misused the legislation to take action against journalists,” said mediapersons present at the program.

They said that if the journalists concerned breached the council’s code of conduct, the council — not the police — should take action against them.

The Council is mulling to hold discussion with online journalists on the modality to bring online journalism under the purview of Press Council. Though online journalism has been emerging as an effective medium it is yet to get formal recognition from the state as a news media.

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